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Pepperdine Welcomes ACE Fellow Mark Robinson
Pepperdine University president Andy Benton gains a new colleague this semester in Mark Robinson, vice chancellor of student development for the City College of San Francisco. Robinson will spend the fall semester at Pepperdine under Benton’s mentorship as a fellow for the American Council on Education (ACE).
The ACE Fellows Program enables participants to immerse themselves in the culture, policies, and decision-making processes of another institution. Robinson will learn by observing and doing, eventually spearheading a project that he and Benton determine together.
"Coming from a public two-year community college with a bigger population and a lot of diversity, I know that [observing at Pepperdine] will give me an opportunity to see things from another perspective in higher education," says Robinson, who will be focusing on three areas of administration: advancement, international programs, and athletics.
Robinson’s leadership skills come from varied experiences, including playing college basketball for the University of Indiana and serving as chief executive officer of the Basketball Players Association in the United Kingdom, where he also played professionally.
During his time in the U.K., Robison earned his doctoral degree in faculty of education at the University of Manchester and a postgraduate certificate in teaching and student learning outcomes at Bolton Institute. He returned to the City College of San Francisco, where he had earned his associate’s degree years before, and quickly moved into college administration. He was named associate dean of students, then dean of student affairs, and currently, vice chancellor of student development.
Hundreds of vice presidents, deans, department chairs, faculty, and other emerging leaders have participated in the ACE Fellows Program since its inception in 1965. Currently Pepperdine president Andy Benton serves as the 2008-09 chair of the organization. ACE is the nation’s premier higher education leadership development program in preparing senior leaders to serve American colleges and universities.
Pepperdine has also been a sending institution for the ACE Fellows Program. In 1997, Nancy Magnusson, the University’s senior vice president for planning, information, and technology, was mentored as an ACE fellow by President Karen Morse at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington.
"My ACE fellowship was highly beneficial, allowing me to study the politics and structure of higher education from multiple perspectives," Magnusson says. "I am pleased that Mark Robinson has chosen to spend the semester with us at Pepperdine."